Agenda

The Otolith
Group

INFINITY minus Infinity

 

INFINITY minus Infinity draws on several inspirations: the modernist verse of the Jamaican poet Una Marson, the alluvial invocations of the Martinican philosopher and poet Édouard Glissant, the black feminist poetics of the Brazilian philosopher Denise Ferreira da Silva, and the racial formation of geology theorised by British geographer Kathryn Yusoff amongst others in order to envision a black feminist cosmos animated by the principles of mathematical nihilism.

 

The phrase “hostile environment” invokes the covert policy of targeting migrants enacted by the UK Conservative government since 2014. It stands for the criminalization of the Afro-Caribbean women and men that migrated to Britain in the 1950s to help reconstruct its industrial infrastructure after the war. The recent effort to detain and deport the women and men of the “Windrush generation”—so called because they followed in the wake of the men that emigrated to Britain from the Caribbean on board the HMS Empire Windrush in 1948—reveals the commitment of the British State to disarticulating the forms of attachment and belonging of Afro-Caribbean settlement that helped decolonize the British empire from within. INFINITY minus Infinity extends its confrontation with the Tory policy of the ongoing hostile environment into an interscalar movement between times and spaces.

 

It brings together dance, performance, music, recital, and digital animation to compose a transhistorical zone in which the unpayable debts of racial capitalism cannot be separated from the ongoing crimes of climate catastrophe. INFINITY minus Infinity enacts the past distress, present duress and future dread of the British Capitalocene through the assembly of a chorus of transtemporal deities whose utterances, expressions, gestures, and movements allude to the accumulated times and spaces of the United Kingdom’s environmental hostility.

 

INFINITY minus Infinity confronts the compounded timelines of the afterlife of slavery enacted by British imperial capitalism with the forces and the fictions of 21st Century black feminist digital cosmology.Commissioned by Sharjah Architecture Triennial SAT01.

 

2019 Co-produced with Z33 House for Contemporary Art, Design and Architecture.

 

The Otolith Group was founded in 2002.

Its work is research based and spans the moving image, audio, performance, installation, and curation. It incorporate film making and post-lens-based essayistic aesthetics that explore the temporal anomalies, anthropic inversions, and synthetic alienation of the posthuman, the inhuman, the non-human, and the complexity of the environmental conditions of life we all face.

 

Approaching curation as an artistic practice of building intergenerational and cross-cultural platforms, the collective has been influential in critically introducing particular works of artists such as Chris Marker, Harun Farocki, Anand Patwardhan, Etel Adnan, Black Audio Film Collective, Sue Clayton, Mani Kaul, Peter Watkins, and Chimurenga in the UK, US, Europe, and Lebanon.

Shedhalle – The Otolith Group: INFINITY minus Infinity

The Otolith Group
INFINITY minus Infinity
Filmstill: The Otolith Group.
Courtesy of The Otolith Group and LUX, London.